Molecular Cancer Epidemiology

The Molecular Cancer Epidemiology Laboratory studies the epidemiology and genetics of breast, ovarian, and endometrial cancer. Our research is focussed on identifying molecular signatures of normal and tumour tissue that can point to the genetic and environmental causes of these cancers, and identify new targets for drug therapy. The laboratory covers a range of projects with the themes of clinical genetics, cancer epidemiology, molecular pathology, genome-wide analyses and drug development.

CURRENT RESEARCH

  • Australian National Endometrial Cancer Study (ANECS) & the Endometrial Cancer Association Consortium (ECAC)
  • clinical classification of gene variants in high and moderate risk cancer genes, including BRCA1, BRCA2 and TP53
  • breast, ovarian and endometrial cancer predisposition and prognosis
  • genome-wide association and functional genomics studies of gynaecological cancer
  • identification of gynaecological cancer predisposition genes and novel drug targets
  • implementation of genomic testing into patient care – Australian Genomics activities

Staff

Internal Collaborators

External Collaborators

  • ANECS (Australian National Endometrial Cancer Study) anecs.org.au
  • ECAC consortium (Endometrial Cancer Association Consortium) ecac-studies.org
  • ENIGMA consortium (Evidence-based Network for the Interpretation of Germline Mutant Alleles) enigmaconsortium.org
  • The BRCA Exchange brcaexchange.org
  • InSiGHT (International Society for Gastrointestinal Hereditary Tumours)
  • ClinGen clinicalgenome.org
  • kConFab (Kathleen Cuningham Foundation Consortium for research into familial breast cancer) kconfab.org
  • BCAC consortium (Breast Cancer Association Consortium) http://apps.ccge.medschl.cam.ac.uk/consortia/bcac/
  • OCAC consortium (Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium) http://apps.ccge.medschl.cam.ac.uk/consortia/ocac/
  • CIMBA consortium (Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2) http://apps.ccge.medschl.cam.ac.uk/consortia/cimba/
  • E2C2 (Epidemiology of Endometrial Cancer Consortium)
  • AGHA (Australian Genomics Health Alliance) https://www.australiangenomics.org.au/
  • Professor Douglas Easton, Dr Alison Dunning & Professor Paul Pharoah, Cambridge University
  • Professor David Goldgar & Professor Sean Tavtigian, University of Utah
  • Associate Professor Logan Walker, University of Otago
  • Professor Grant Montgomery, The University of Queensland
  • Associate Professor Jyotsna Batra, Queensland University of Technology
  • Professor Wilbert Zwart, Netherlands Cancer Institute
  • Associate Professor Jason Gertz, Huntsman Cancer Institute
  • Professor Hugo Vankelecom, KU Leuven University
  • National Health and Medical Research Council
  • Cancer Australia

STUDENT PROJECTS

Genetic epidemiology of endometrial cancer

Suitable for PhD students only. Endometrial cancer is the most commonly diagnosed invasive gynaecological cancer in developed countries. In contrast with many cancers, the incidence and mortality of endometrial cancer is steadily increasing, largely due to increasing rates of obesity, the strongest risk factor for this disease. Through leadership of the Endometrial Cancer Association Consortium […]

Find Out More

Identifying the regulatory targets of common endometrial cancer risk variants

PhD project only We and our international Endometrial Cancer Association Consortium collaborators have identified common genetic variation at 16 genomic regions that associates with endometrial cancer risk. Although we have identified potentially causal risk variants, at most regions we do not know which genes these variants target. However, we have conducted global (HiChIP) analyses of […]

Find Out More

Screening of genetically identified compounds for endometrial cancer therapy

Suitable for PhD students only. Our International Endometrial Cancer Association Consortium collaborators and we have identified common genetic variations at 16 genomic regions that associates with endometrial cancer risk. Although we have identified potentially causal risk variants, at most regions we do not know which genes these variants target. However, we have conducted global (HiChIP) […]

Find Out More

Evaluation of variants in known or candidate high-risk cancer genes

Can be adapted in scope for Honours or PhD Background: Panel gene testing is increasingly applied to identify the underlying genetic cause of cancer in patients with suspected hereditary cancer. Identification of a pathogenic variant directly influences clinical management for patients and their at-risk relatives, setting the path for preventative and increasingly chemotherapeutic options. Unfortunately, […]

Find Out More